A microphone is a device that converts acoustic power into electric power, sound waves to electrical voltages, then converted into sound waves that are amplified through speakers.

We associate microphones often with the music and the entertainment industry, but the device can be dated back as early as the 1600s when scientists figured out that they could amplify sound.

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The microphone in the 21st century
  • During the 2000s the trend was miniature mics that were applicable for portable devices. MEMS (microelectromechanical systems) made inroads for this technology.
  • In 2010, the Eigenmike was released. It's a microphone that's composed of several high-quality microphones that were arranged onto the surface of a solid sphere.
  • 1827 - The first person to ever coin the word "microphone" was Sir Charles Wheatstone who was a renowned English physicist and inventor. He was among the first scientists to formally recognize that sound waves were "transmitted by waves through mediums."
  • 1876-8 - The first modern microphone was invented by Emile Berliner who worked alongside the famed inventor Thomas Edison. Soon after, David Edward Hughes developed the first carbon microphone.
  • James West and Gerhard Sessler patented the electroacoustic transducer, an electret microphone in 1964.
  • In the 1970s, both the dynamic and condenser mics were further enhanced for clearer sound recording and a lower sound level sensitivity.
  • In the 1980s the first clip-on microphones were developed by Sennheiser.
  • In the 1990s, Neumann introduced a condenser microphone designed for live performances which set a new standard for quality.
The microphone in the 1600s

The word "microphone" was not used during this time until the 19th century but an English physicist and inventor named Robert Hooke developed an acoustic cup and string style phone, where he was considered to be a pioneer in the field of transmitting sound across a distance.

  • The condenser microphone was patented by EC Wente in 1916
  • The RCA company developed the first ribbon microphone used for radio broadcasting in 1920
  • Georg Neumann designed the first commercial condenser microphone in 1928
  • The first dynamic microphone was marketed by Western Electric in 1931
  • A patent was filed for the first wireless microphone by Raymond A Litke in 1957
  • The first uni-directional microphone device was a new level of design that collects sound from the top of the microphone in 1959.

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Written communication during the BCE Years

The Kish tablet is dated to 3500 B.C. and is considered by some experts to be the oldest form of known handwriting. It features proto-cuneiform signs - symbols that resemble a physical object. The Egyptian hieroglyphs are similar to this form of writing and date back to 3200 B.C.

Written language seems to have come about around 1200 B.C. in China and around 600 B.C. in the Americas.

How Communication Evolved From Pictures to Letters



There is no single man who can be truly credited for the discovery of electricity, but some of the names which would pop up in the list include Benjamin Franklin and his kite experiment, and Nikola Tesla who is often dubbed as the father of electricity because of his understandings of this force behind most of the everyday items which we use today. From home entertainment to the lights outside the road, electricity is behind it.

5 Most Important Inventions of all Time


Sound waves are a type of power

We are surrounded by sound waves. Sound has the power to communicate ideas, scare us, entertain us, even help us fall in love.

Sound waves are a kind of energy that is launched when an object vibrates. These waves travel through a medium like air or water. When they reach your eardrum, the brain translates the pressure waves into words or music.

What are sound waves and how do they work? | Popular Science


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